H. Bungener (BzLZZ. SOC. chim., 1886, [ii], 45, 487) confirmed the observation of Lermer (Zoc. cit.) respecting the occurrence of a crystalline acid, insoluble in water, which rapidly became yellow and resinous on exposure t o the air. H e designated the substance "lupulic acid," stating it to melt a t 92-93*, and to agree in composition with the formula C50H7008. It was furthermore considered that it is the resinous oxidation product of this acid which imparts bitterness t o a decoction of hops, and that this resinous product exists in hops together with the acid from which it is readily formed. Bungener and Fries (Zeitsch. ges. Brauw., 1885, 8, 267) have stated that hops contain asparagine, but although the method of separation was given, no analysis or other evidence of the identity of the substance appears to have been recorded. Issleib (Arch. Pharm., 1880, 13, 345), from the results of a somewhat extended investigation, has concluded that hops contain a peculiar bitter substance, " hop-bitter," of the composition C29H4,0,0. This, when treated with dilute sulphuric acid, is said to be converted into a resinous product, " lupuliretin," C10H1604, and a crystalline, bitter substance, " lupulinic acid,," C,,H8201,, which is insoluble in water, the change being represented by the following equation : 2C29H46010 + 3H20 =C10H1604 f C48H82019* The same author, furthermore, assigns to hop-resin the formula Cl0HI4O3, and assumes that by the simple addition of a molecule of water it is converted into " lupuliretin," C,,H160,. On the other hand, hop-resin, C10H1403, is considered t o be produced by the oxidation of the essential oil of hops, the latter being given the formula CloH180, and the change represented as follows : C1oH180 + 2 0 , = C,,Hl40, + 2H2O. Inasmuch as it is well known, however, that both hop-resin and the essential oil of hops are very complex products, the latter consisting largely of a sesquiterpene, Cl5HZ4, the fallacy of the above conclusions is apparent.
The labiate plant Micromeria Chamissonis (Benth.) Greene (syn. iM. Douglassi Benth.), commonly known as "Yerba Buena," is a perennial, trailing or creeping, sweet-scented herb, which is indigenous to the Pacific coast of the United States. The generic name is stated t o be derived from the Greek milros, small, and mwos, part, on account of the small size of the flowers (compare Jepson's "Flora of Western Xiddle California," p. 463). A description of the anatomical characters of the plant, with illustrations, has been given by J. Moeller.2 The above-mentioned species of Micromeria is used t o some extent medicinally, but, so far as known to us, it has never been the subject of chemical investigation, and we have therefore availed ourselves of the opportunity of making a complete examination of its constituents. Experimental, The material employed in this investigation consisted of a bale of the entire, air-dried herb, which was kindly placed a t our disposal by Messrs. Burroughs, Wellcome & Co., of London. The genuineness of the material was assured by the fact that it had been specially collected for them in California under the supervision of a competent botanist, Mr.
By FREDERICK BELDING POWER and FRANK TUTIN. THE bark of the olive tree, Olea Europaea, LinnB, is reputed to posses8 medicinal properties similar t o those of the leaves, but, with the exception of the observation that, like other parts of the plant, it contains mannitol, nothing appears to have been ascertained respecting
X LII.-(2 ynocadiu, cc New Cyanogenet ic Glucoside. By FREDERICK BELDING POWER and FREDERIC HERBERT LEES, IN a preliminary note it was recorded by one of us and F. H. Gornall (Proc., 1904, 20, 137) that when the seeds of Gynocardicc ocloratcc (R. Br.) were crushed and brought into contact with water, a strong odour of hydrogen cyanide was developed, and this behaviour was shown to be due to the presence of ft cyanogenetic glucoside, which was isolated and designated g9nocardin. Since then we have been able to procure a large quantity of gynocardia seeds, which were specially collected for us in India, and have succeeded in isolating gynocardin in a pure stste and in ail amount sufficient t o admit of its further study. The yield of this substance w a s equal to 5 per cent. of the weight of the seeds.
CCLI1.-The Constituents of Taraxacum Root. By FREDERICK BELDING POWER and HENRY BROIWNING, jun. THE root of the common dandelion (Taraxacum oficinale, Wiggers) appears to have been employed medicinally for several centuries, and it still maintains a place in the more important national Pharmacopoeias. It is therefore somewhat remarkable that up to the present time so little of a definite nature should be known respecting its constituents, for, apart from the observed presence of inulin-which is common t o the family of Composita+-laevulin, and such ordinary constituents of plants as sugar, resin, and mucilage, no well-characterised compound has hitherto been isolated from this root. Polex (Arch. I'hurrn., 1839, 19, 50) has stated that on boiling the milky juice of taraxacum with water, filtering and concentrating the liquid, a crystalline substance was obtained which was sparingly soluble in cold water, but readily so in boiling water, alcohol, or ether, and possessed an agreeably bitter, somewhat acrid taste. This substance was termed ' I taraxacin," but no analysis, melting point, or other characters were recorded which would serve for its identification. It was also noted by Polex (Zoc. cit.) that the resinous and albuminous material which separated on heating the milky juice to boiling, when extrated with alcohol, yielded a substance which crystallised in a white, cauliflower-like form. Kromayer (Arch. PImrm., 1861, 105, 6) examined the dried milky juice of the plant, for which he proposed the name " leontodonium." From the portion of this which was soluble in water he obtained some crystals mixed with amorphous material, but did not succeed in isolating the so-called " taraxacin." The portion of the dried milky juice which was insoluble in water yielded, on extrsction with alcohol, " tasteless, spherical granules," which the author designated as " tarasacerin." An analysis (C = 79.44 ; H = 12.69 per cent.
scite is a Brooklyn-based startup that helps researchers better discover and understand research articles through Smart Citations–citations that display the context of the citation and describe whether the article provides supporting or contrasting evidence. scite is used by students researchers from around the world and is funded in part by the National Science Foundation and the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health.